Why did the Tesla share price just dump 9%?

We check what’s been going on with the electric vehicle manufacturer lately.

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Key points

  • Tesla shares shed 9% on the NASDAQ on Friday
  • It coincided with the company's CEO Elon Musk threatening to cut staff by 10%  
  • But, in a tweet after market close on Saturday, he backflipped, saying "headcount will increase" 

The Tesla Inc (NASDAQ: TSLA) share price has had a tough time in US markets lately.

The global giant’s shares plummeted 9% to $703.55 on the NASDAQ on Friday. In after hours trade, the company’s share price fell a further 0.46%.

So what caused the Tesla share price to sink so rapidly?

Elon Musk’s ‘super bad’ feeling about the economy

Tesla is a world-leading electric vehicle (EV) maker headquartered in the US state of Texas.

The company’s high-profile CEO Elon Musk unveiled plans to cut 10% of Tesla’s staff on Friday, Reuters reported.

In an email seen by the publication, Musk revealed he had a “super bad feeling” about the economy and needed to cut staff. Musk reportedly said:

Tesla will be reducing salaried headcount by 10% as we have become overstaffed in many areas. Note this does not apply to anyone actually building cars, battery packs or installing solar. Hourly headcount will increase.

However, in a Tweet after the US market had closed on Saturday, Musk backpedalled on plans to cut staff, saying: “Total headcount will increase, but salaried should be fairly flat.”

The news comes after Tesla last week ordered staff to return to work in the office or leave the company. Musk said, “If you don’t show up, we will assume you have resigned.”

Telsa had close to 100,000 employees at the end of 2021.

However, Tesla was not the only share to fall on the NASDAQ on Friday. The Nasdaq-100 Index slipped 2.67% on Friday, with Apple Inc (NASDAQ: AAPLE) dropping 3.86% and Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ: MSFT) slipping 1.66%.

Tesla share price snapshot

The Tesla share price has climbed 16% over the past 12 months but has fallen a substantial 41% year to date.

For perspective, the NASDAQ 100 Index has shed 9% in a year, dropping 24% year to date.

The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has positions in and has recommended Tesla. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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